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USA | May 14, 2022

US Coast Guard repatriates 86 Cubans after intercepting seven illegal voyages to Florida

Gavin Riley

Gavin Riley / Our Today

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A Coast Guard Air Station Miami HC-144 Ocean Sentry law enforcement air crew alerted Coast Guard Sector Key West watchstanders of a rustic vessel about 10 miles south of Key West, Florida, May 7, 2022. The people were repatriated May 13, 2022. (Photo courtesy of US Coast Guard)

In its second major operation in days, the United States Coast Guard says 86 Cuban nationals were repatriated on Friday (May 13) after seven interdictions off the coast of Florida.

The US Coast Guard, in a statement yesterday, said an ‘intercept uptick’ of Cuban migrants, has been observed since October 1, 2021, as they attempt to enter the United States through the Florida Keys archipelago.

There were no reported deaths or injuries during the makeshift boat interdictions, the Coast Guard added, with migrants receiving food, water, shelter and basic medical attention while aboard its vessels.

“We urge families in the United States to encourage their loved ones to migrate legally,” said Lieutenant Commander Mark Cobb, a Coast Guard District Seven enforcement officer. “Illegally crossing the unpredictable Florida Straits in rustic, makeshift vessels is very dangerous and can result in loss of life.”

Two days ago, on another fringe of the Caribbean, the Coast Guard sprung into action to rescue 38 Haitian and Dominican Republic migrants after their boat capsized in the Mona Passage.

As rescue operations continued well into Saturday, 11 persons were confirmed to have drowned and eight others are being hospitalised in Puerto Rico.

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